We love seeing horse people in our eventing community finding creative ways to help the greater good during these difficult times. Among them: Laura Rayne, who has redirected her usual business of repairing horse blankets into making medical masks during the COVID-19 pandemic.
She has shut down the service side of her business, Blanket Safe, in order to make masks and provide them for free to health care workers in need.
“These masks are not in substitution for the N95 Masks; however with lack of enough masks, the CDC has started recommending health care workers use bandanas or even scarves to help prevent/slow the spread,” Laura says. “I am a Registered Nurse by trade, and I went through four years of schooling with some amazing men and women. I worked with these individuals, I am friends with these same people. So it means a lot to be able to help.”
Laura is making masks in various styles with three layers of 100% cotton. Some have the option for metal nose pieces to adjust fit; some have elastic while others tie; and some even have the option of a removable and changeable hepa/cpap filter.
She is happy to make and ship the masks on her own dime; however, the materials cost money.
“A lot of the supplies we have are for horse blankets (which cannot be used for masks), YET before I started repairing horse blankets I was making baby blankets,” Laura says. “So I do have a moderate supply of 100% cotton fabric. However, because of the sudden demand … I do not have enough of everything.”
While Laura says she would love to fund the endeavor herself, her business has slowed considerably during the outbreak. And, she says, “I would never charge the men and women working hard, risking their health, or the health of their family members, to have to pay for such a necessity.”
Laura says she just had a business ask for 50 masks ASAP, as well as several individuals throughout the U.S. To help offset the costs, she is looking to the equestrian community.
“I am asking for donations to help with the cost of all the supplies and shipping,” she says, noting that any unused donations will be donated to Frangible Pin Funding. “I do not often ask for assistance, but please, if you are looking for a way to help, please feel free to donate!”